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Old 09.08.2017, 14:18
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Tram Drivers' Hand Gestures

Regular tram users in Zurich would have noticed that drivers gesture a "hello" to the drivers' of other trams passing them by on the opposite track.

I find it amazing that they don't miss doing this - just given how many trams criss-cross each other all the time.

I wonder if this could be somewhat distracting, especially closer to tram stops.
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Old 09.08.2017, 14:23
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Re: Tram Drivers' Hand Gestures

You'd be shocked to find out that all motorcyclists greet each other the same way in traffic. (Unless one rides a scooter...)

Friendly greetings are not high up in the list of causes of accidents to be honest.
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Old 09.08.2017, 14:30
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Re: Tram Drivers' Hand Gestures

More accidents happen when you use the middle finger gesture.

Last edited by olygirl; 09.08.2017 at 15:56.
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Old 09.08.2017, 15:43
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Re: Tram Drivers' Hand Gestures

I really don't think simply lifting a hand in greeting is going to distract an experienced tram (bus, motorbike, VW camper etc) driver, to be honest.
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Old 09.08.2017, 15:58
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Re: Tram Drivers' Hand Gestures

Swiss pilots do the same: (5:40 mark)

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Old 09.08.2017, 16:05
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Re: Tram Drivers' Hand Gestures

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Swiss pilots do the same: (5:40 mark)
I don't think he was waving another pilot, he was waving the OK to the ground crew </pedantic>
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Old 09.08.2017, 16:20
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Re: Tram Drivers' Hand Gestures

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I don't think he was waving another pilot, he was waving the OK to the ground crew </pedantic>
You're right. Visual confirmation is a standard to let the pilot know the area under him is clear
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Old 09.08.2017, 16:52
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Re: Tram Drivers' Hand Gestures

But otherwise waving gestures between drivers in local transport companies is pretty much the standard all over the world I find.... Show me a city where it doesn't happen would be a more interesting question

Historically transport is one of the areas where trade union movement is very strong, and by the mobile nature of their work people get to know each other more (my personal opinion, don't quote me for that...)
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Old 09.08.2017, 16:57
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Re: Tram Drivers' Hand Gestures

For most it will be an automated gesture of which they hardly notice anymore that they are actually doing it.
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Old 09.08.2017, 18:07
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Re: Tram Drivers' Hand Gestures

Me ma used to drive a Reliant Robin, and they all waved at each other too.

Wierdos.

To the tram thing. You'd think they'd be passing the same drivers several times a day. I wonder how many times they greet the same person.
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Old 09.08.2017, 18:25
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Re: Tram Drivers' Hand Gestures

All countries do that? I thought? At home it is a standard thing.

I forget myself and greet the driver hello and bye in my home country, Swiss style, which is not standard and embarrassing. I have graduated, though lately to just get on/off the bus only opening my mouth and realizing before "bonjour/bonne journée" comes out. Just makes me look like a fish gasping for air, loudly.
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Old 09.08.2017, 21:55
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Re: Tram Drivers' Hand Gestures

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Me ma used to drive a Reliant Robin, and they all waved at each other too.
That was just to stop it toppling over when rounding a corner.
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Old 09.08.2017, 23:34
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Re: Tram Drivers' Hand Gestures

I think motor-homers are big on it too.
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Old 09.08.2017, 23:55
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Re: Tram Drivers' Hand Gestures

Actually it is a fail-safe signal. If a driver fails to greet the other colleague, he is assumed to be in a hostage situation and this requires police intervention.
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Old 10.08.2017, 00:22
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Re: Tram Drivers' Hand Gestures

I often greet colleagues in the office.

no accidents so far.
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Old 10.08.2017, 09:58
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Re: Tram Drivers' Hand Gestures

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You'd be shocked to find out that all motorcyclists greet each other the same way in traffic. (Unless one rides a scooter...)

Friendly greetings are not high up in the list of causes of accidents to be honest.

Subaru drivers also do the same, almost worldwide...
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Old 10.08.2017, 10:17
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Re: Tram Drivers' Hand Gestures

NSU drivers used to greet each other... I'd forgotten about it.
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Old 11.08.2017, 14:00
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Re: Tram Drivers' Hand Gestures

Some of these guys have worked together for years!! And they are friends outside of work too. It's a secret sign to when and where they are going to have their first beer when they finish their shift!!

Also, sort of makes their day more interesting. Imagine driving the same route for hours on end?

I had a friend who was a bus driver in Edinburgh, he always beeped his horn at me!!
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Old 11.08.2017, 14:03
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Re: Tram Drivers' Hand Gestures

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Also, sort of makes their day more interesting. Imagine driving the same route for hours on end?
...and having to wave to every tram driver passing in the opposite direction every 5 minutes.
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Old 11.08.2017, 14:57
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Re: Tram Drivers' Hand Gestures

Indian bus drivers in hilly areas in fact stop in the middle of the road to say Hi and check on the road conditions. occasionally they would also share a drink or two, when stuck in a jam or construction bound site for long durations
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